Pulses, nuts, and seeds are consumed globally. They are known for their absolute organic quality and high nutritional properties. There are uncountable types of nuts, seeds, and beans. Almost all of them are advised to be used after proper washing and soaking. Not now, but from the beginning for centuries Soaking is a method used all over the world. Our ancestors may not have been aware of the biochemical reasons, but they continued to soak their nuts, seeds, beans, and grains to cook them easily and improve their digestion.
Seeds, nuts, and different pulses are amazing foods known for their nutritional value. Soaked almonds are heroes among all and are taken by people of all ages for various benefits. Legumes like green grams, black chickpea seeds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, etc. are seeds of grains or legumes that produce a super-foods. These kinds of foods are packed with energy, enzymes, protein, calcium, fibre, vitamins, and minerals like vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, magnesium, iron, folate, etc that promote good health and are vital for complete development. Also, the phytochemicals, saponins, and tannins have antioxidant and anti-carcinogenic effects. Hence, it is also good for the eyes, brain, and other organs. Several health experts, like our forefathers, think that you should only eat pulses and almonds after soaking them.
Why is soaking beneficial?
Soaking and washing thoroughly clears impurities and chemicals of the nuts and pulses and offers various benefits.These benefits are an added advantage to the already beneficial nuts and pulses. Let’s discuss the benefits of soaked nuts and pulses.
1. Improves texture and decreases cooking time
In addition to removing gas-causing compounds, soaking beans before cooking is a common practice that softens the texture and speeds up the cooking process. Soaking for several hours increases the amount of water in the seeds, which speeds up chemical reactions that occur during cooking, such as starch gelatinization.
2. Reduces bloating
The ‘oligosaccharides’ in nuts and legumes cause bloating and gastritis when consumed in larger quantities. Our body does not contain the protein required to break down oligosaccharides. Once these broken compounds reach the colon, they are used by naturally occurring bacteria. As a result, we experience abdominal pain and bloating. Soaking prevents the degree of discomfort caused due to this process.
3. Increased mineral-absorption
Pulses are store house of proteins. Soaking it in water for few hours allows these nutrients to be absorbed into the bloodstream when eaten. Nutrients such as zinc, iron, and calcium are essential to the body for immunity, metabolic processes, and bone health. Soaking lentils makes these nutrients easier to absorb into your body.
4. Easier to digest
Research shows that soaked beans and almonds are easier to digest than their raw counterparts. Beans and nuts contain indigestible dietary fiber, which is difficult to digest, so soaking them in water makes them more soluble. Soaking also breaks down many complex starches, making it easier for the food we eat to be absorbed and passed through our bodies.
5. Improves brain health and memory
Almonds contain a compound called L-carnitine, which promotes cell production in the brain. Research shows that soaked almonds can also help improve memory. Almonds are a good source of vitamins E and B6, which contribute to protein absorption in brain cells. Additionally, the presence of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids contributes to the overall development of the brain. Soaked almonds increase the absorption of these nutrients and improve brain function.
6. Healthy hair
Almond oil is very famous as a nutritional hair oil for hair growth and strengthening, however consumption of soaked almonds regularly would help improve hair health. Legumes and almonds are both good sources of protein, which can help reduce hair loss. In fact, taking these substances strengthens existing hair and stimulates the growth of fresh hair.
7. Metabolism and weight management
Eating soaked almonds and pulses greatly contributes to improving the body's metabolism. Additionally, studies have shown that soaked nuts and lentils can help with weight management while providing necessary nutrients. Additionally, soaked almonds primarily help lower bad cholesterol levels. These also help reduce water weight and fat content in the body.
8. Reduces phytic acids
Phytic acid is a compound commonly found in cereals and grains. Phytic acid is sometimes called an anti-nutrient because it binds to certain proteins and minerals such as iron, zinc, and calcium. By binding to these nutrients, it reduces their ability to be absorbed in our body. Phytic acid molecules filter out into the soaking water that's discarded. The amount of phytic acid decreases as soaking time increases.
Now you have all the reasons to add soaked nuts and pulses to your daily diet. The body requires all kinds of food like fruits, vegetables, leafy greens, sprouts, soaked nuts and pulses. Eat a balanced diet for a healthy body and mind.